Satellite images released by the US State Department show changes in the civilian "safe zone" in northern Sri Lanka, the heart of the conflict between the Tamil Tigers and the Sri Lankan forces.
The satellite image on the left shows an almost empty beach in February 2009. The April 2009 image shows the same site where an estimated 100,000 refugees were camped after fleeing the fighting.
The US State Department said about 25,000 tents were packed into a coastal strip about eight square miles large. Thousands of civilians have fled the area over the last few days.